For the 2018 National Conference, NZAGC is offering teachers the opportunity to attend an additional workshop with Jim Delisle focused on literacy.


Building strong writers in middle school: 12 top lessons for reflective wordsmiths and their teachers 

March 16th 2018, 1:30-3:00pm 

Ellerslie School, 12 Kalmia St, Ellerslie, Auckland 

So many writing activities in today’s schools follow a standard format that is neither interesting nor purposeful for advancing student learning.  This session is designed to change that.  Participants will be presented with 12 writing lessons that enhance character, creativity and self-awareness, while engaging students in personal writing that they actually enjoy composing.  While some of the activities are brief and humorous, others are extended and require introspection.  Each classroom-tested lesson will be accompanied by student-generated responses that will help to turn even your most reluctant writers into wordsmiths.



NZAGC Member*



Standard (17 December to 15 March 2018)



 * Plus Eventbrite fees    


Enrolments for the pre-conference workshop will open on September 16th



Dr. James (Jim) Delisle has taught gifted children and those who work on their behalf for more than 39 years.  Jim retired from Kent State University in 2008 after 25 years of service there as a Distinguished Professor of special education.  Throughout his career, Jim has taken time away from college teaching to return to his “classroom roots”, volunteering as a 2nd, 4th, 5th and 8th grade teacher in 1991, 1997 and 2006.  Too, Jim taught gifted middle school students one day a week between 1998-2008 in the Twinsburg, Ohio Public Schools.  For the past five years, Jim has worked part-time with highly-gifted 9th and 10th graders at the Scholars’ Academy in Conway, South Carolina.

The author of more than 250 articles and 19 books, Jim’s work has been translated into multiple languages and has been featured in both professional journals and in popular media, such as The New York Times, People Magazine, and on Oprah!  Jim’s newest book, Dumbing Down America: The War on our Nation’s Brightest Young Minds (and what we can do to fight back), was published in 2014.  His next book, Doing poorly on purpose: Underachievement and the quest for dignity, will be published in 2017. A frequent presenter throughout the U.S., Jim has also addressed audiences in nations as diverse as England, Greece, China, Oman, Turkey, United Arab Emirates and Saudi Arabia.

Jim’s wife, Deb, served as the Assistant Secretary for Elementary and Secondary Education at the US Department of Education in Washington, DC for three years, and is currently CEO of ASCD, the nation’s premiere association for educators.  Their son, Matt, is an Emmy Award winning video editor in San Francisco and the source of many of their stories about raising gifted and creative kids.  In his retirement, Jim plans to walk as many beaches as possible and to write children’s picture books where the main characters are based on young people he has taught or counseled during his career.